DEP Seeks Public Comment on Major Update to State Wildlife Action Plan (DEP News Release, 12/11/17)
This previous version of NJ's State Wildlife Action Plan (Plan) is dated January 23, 2008. To review a list of the revisions made between the prior posted version (February 16, 2007) and the 2008 version, please review the Summary of Revisions to the Wildlife Action Plan.
The Plan's latest revision was made in 2017 and is available for comment. For information visit the State Wildlife Action Plan homepage.
Before you print or read the Plan, please read this section!
The Plan has been written in a repetitive format so those interested in implementing conservation practices in localized areas need not review the entire document. For these readers, it is important to read/review three main sections including the Overview, the introduction to the appropriate regional landscape, and the conservation zone(s) of interest.
The Overview provides important information regarding the development of the Plan and the overarching conservation objectives statewide, including state-wide priority objectives (goals) and actions (strategies).
The introduction to the region of interest will help provide insight into the wildlife species and their habitats that are dependent upon your region in addition to the threats that persist.
Finally, the conservation zone(s) of interest provide(s) more specific information regarding local goals and actions to achieve those goals.
The NJ Division of Fish and Wildlife (DFW) staff, with help from the general public, the state's conservation groups and other stakeholders, has developed a blueprint for the future conservation of our state's species of greatest conservation need. This blueprint is called the Wildlife Action Plan (formerly referred to as the Comprehensive Wildlife Conservation Strategy). In order to qualify for federal funding under the State Wildlife Grants (SWG) program, each state was required to submit a Wildlife Action Plan to the US Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) by October 1, 2005.
Initially the SWG program provided 3:1 matching federal funds to states for research and planning projects that target the conservation of species that are endangered, threatened, rare or have special conservation needs. However, as our state moves into the implementation phase of the Wildlife Action Plan and Management projects that focus on these species, work is funded at a 2:1 level under the program. New Jersey now receives approximately $1-1.2 million dollars in SWG funding each year. Former Acting Governor Richard J. Codey signed legislation that provides an annual appropriation to help meet the state-match required under the federal program. These funds, in addition to in-kind services, volunteer time and donations received through the NJ Tax Check-Off for Wildlife and Conserve Wildlife license plate sales, help insure that New Jersey can continue to qualify for future SWG funding.
The 2005 New Jersey Wildlife Action Plan was submitted to the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service on October 1, 2005, and received conditional approval due to a limited public comment period. The DFW extended the public comment period into January 2006, incorporating recommendations made by the public, stakeholders, and internal reviews, resubmitted the document (dated 07/26/06) to the USFWS on August 4, 2006, for final approval, and continues to refine the Plan as it is a living (or dynamic) document.
The Plan lays the foundation for better coordination of wildlife research and management among programs within the Division of Fish and Wildlife, state and federal agencies and many partners in the conservation community. The conservation strategies from states throughout the nation will collectively provide a strong argument to Congress to work toward providing a stable and permanent funding source for rare-species conservation.
EIGHT (8) REQUIRED ELEMENTS of the WILDLIFE ACTION PLAN
1. Information on the distribution and abundance of species of wildlife
MORE INFORMATION on the WAP and SWG
The Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies (AFWA, formerly known as the International Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies) "Teaming With Wildlife Committee" is leading the push for permanent federal funding for the conservation of rare and nongame species. Teaming With Wildlife is a coalition of more than 3000 organizations that are working to prevent wildlife from becoming endangered by supporting increased federal funding for state-level wildlife conservation.
The Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies, founded in 1902, represents the government agencies responsible for North America's fish and wildlife resources. AFWA applies expertise in science, policy, economics and coalition-building to serve its members as a national and international voice on a broad array of wildlife and conservation issues.
LINKS TO THE 2005 WILDLIFE ACTION PLAN